ISOFIX – what is it exactly?

I’ll be the first to put my hand up and admit when it comes to ISOFIX car restraints, I really have little idea about what it is or how it works. Click through to join me on the nitty gritty of ISOFIX!

You might hear the word ISOFIX thrown about when there is talk of children’s car restraints and that’s because ISOFIX is an international standardised fitting system for car seats that uses fixed anchorage points instead of an adult seat belt, creating a rigid connection between the seat and car. It’s said to be the fastest, easiest and safest system, leaving little room for error when installing your child’s car seat.

All ISOFIX car restraints have two arms on the back of the seat which lock into the ISOFIX anchorage points fitted in your car and may also include a rigid foot prop or top tether. Not all cars have ISOFIX anchorage points so it’s important to check your vehicle manual to see if they’re hiding.

Fitting an ISOFIX base isn’t difficult and personally, I think it’s this element that’s absolutely the best thing about ISOFIX.  It’s easy to tell if you’ve fitted the seat correctly or not by indicators on the seat that change colour tab if it is fitted correctly, which is both simple and reassuring!

Now it’s not our intention to confuse you, but there are different types of ISOFIX – Universal, Vehicle Specific and Semi Universal so it’s important to check that your chosen seat is compatible with your vehicle. It’s important to also note that while ISOFIX is not yet legal in Australia, it is hoped that it will be soon! For more information, I found Maxi-Cosi and Halfords to be great sources for further reading.

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